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Friday, March 28, 2003

Columbia's Largest Export: Dope

From the Houston Chronicle today (top item) we find that:

Professor criticized for urging U.S. defeat

NEW YORK -- A Columbia University professor is being criticized for calling for the defeat of U.S. forces during an antiwar "teach-in" on Wednesday. Nicholas De Genova, an assistant professor of anthropology, said he would like to see "a million Mogadishus" -- a reference to the Somali city where American soldiers were ambushed, with 18 killed, in 1993. The crowd of 3,000 was largely silent at the remark. They loudly applauded De Genova later when he said, "If we really (believe) that this war is criminal ... then we have to believe in the victory of the Iraqi people and the defeat of the U.S. war machine." On Thursday, one of the speakers who followed De Genova called the statements "idiotic."

(Note that De Genova made his statements on Wednesday, but it took until Thursday before anyone got around to calling him on it.)

Well, isn't this special. I did some googling on this clown. Here's the Columbia Anthropology Department web site. He teaches Latino Studies, and is interested in "the politics of ethnographic research practice". Huh.

Here he is in full cry at a Columbia "teach-in" on Israel, last year:

"The heritage of the victims of the Holocaust belongs to the Palestinian people. The state of Israel has no claim to the heritage of the Holocaust," claimed Professor of Latino Studies Nicholas De Genova.

He also signed Columbia's Israel divestment petition.

And he's listed on the web pages for the Institute for Social and Economic Research and Policy. Says he's working on a book: Latino Optics: Racialization and Citizenship Between Mexicans and Puerto Ricans in Chicago.

"Latino Optics". Hmmm. I'll have to put that in my multicultural physics class.

The "Columbia Underground Listing of Professor Ability" (CULPA; a site where students critique their professors' teaching abilities) has one general comment, mostly favorable; one comment on the Holocaust quote above; and response to that, again mildly favorable to the professor. Note that this last quote says "he makes no secret of his politics". I suppose at Columbia this is considered a good thing. You wouldn't want to hide any agendas under a cloak of impartiality, or anything like that.

By the way, for some reason, these reviews of De Genova are listed under the "General Chem" class. He's not listed in CULPA's anthro department pages.

UPDATE: More, from Newsday. Boy howdy:

The professor, Nicholas De Genova, also called for the defeat of U.S. forces in Iraq and said, "The only true heroes are those who find ways that help defeat the U.S. military." And he asserted that Americans who call themselves "patriots" are white supremacists.

The University is preparing a statement. I shiver with antici--------pation.

UPDATE II: InstaP now mentions this, leading to this long and information-packed post from Eugene Volokh. I know you'll be startled, but Blogspot is acting up again, and the permalinks aren't working. It's the Mar 28, 12:08 PM post. It contains many shameful statements from various professors.

Ah, plus a first-hand account at National Review.

I will sing another refrain of my sad lament: I went into a field where you actually have to have the right answers from time to time, rather than just making up whatever crap suits your fancy. Why, oh why, did I do that?